Q. Here is the story. We ordered some panels from overseas. They arrived in the container and looked pretty good, but then a few days after we took them out of the container they warped quite a bit and are unusable. We just checked the moisture and it was fairly low, around 7 percent MC. What is happening and what can we do?

A. Wood only changes its size or shape because its moisture content has changed. So, we know for 100 percent that the panels were shipped at a moisture content that was not the moisture content at your location when you opened the container. (A container, regardless of the route used, will not allow moisture in or out, so the moisture will not change in shipment.) I suspect that the moisture in your location was too dry for the panels. That is, the panels were too wet for your environment or your environment was too dry for the panels.

Note that you checked the MC after the moisture had left the wet panels, so your readings would be dry. The moisture should have been checked immediately when the containers were opened.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for the warp at this point.

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.